7 On Your Side: Charles County meets to end 'Bobcat barricade'

7 On Your Side: Getting results for homeowners fighting with Charles County. (Photo: ABC7)

Subdivision residents heard from Charles County for the first open meeting explain why it wants to build a road through what residents say is their private property.

“They came in without any of us knowing what was going on. They were going to just bulldoze their way in,” said resident and project opponent Roland Ziegler.

Charles County Social Services wants to turn an old house into a center for parents to meet with their children placed in the foster system.It wants to open the center by January 1st.

“It’s hard to teach parents how to parent. It’s hard to help them learn new skills. It’s hard to help them bond with their child in an appropriate way when you’re sitting in an office,” explained Director Therese Wolf.

But White Plains residents say nobody told them about the road project to connect to that foster center and took on what they viewed as a government takeover of their private property,

“Actually, they had the county workers trapped there because they couldn’t get out,” recalled Ziegler.

Residents called in 7 On Your Side – and that same day – Charles County constructions crews stopped.

7 On Your Side also identified an alternate route on land already owned by the county, but engineers say it would take an extra year and a lot more money.

“That comes in at about $720,000,” said Charles County Public Works Deputy Director Gregory Boykin.

Charles County looked to lower tensions in a community hearing, while asserting it could legally build on the land despite resident concerns.

More than a hundred White Plains residents signed a petition in opposition, more than half showing up at council chambers in La Plata.

The standoff moving from Bobcat barricades to either compromise – or lawsuits.


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